Driving County Roads

An on line journal sharing my views. The content reflects my background as a rural person employed in agriculture and as a retired elected official of local government.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Absentee Ballot Board Established

On Tuesday, the Nicollet County Board of Commissioners passed a resolution establishing an Absentee Ballot Board. This action will allow for consistency in the acceptance or rejection of absentee ballots throughout the whole county. This board will be made up of trained staff appointed by Nicollet County Auditor/Treasurer Bridgette Kennedy.

This action will be an improvement of the system in place during past elections. In the past, each precinct made the decision about acceptance or rejection. While each precinct has trained election judges, because they are human, they could apply the standards in a number of different ways. This new board will assure greater consistency throughout each precinct.

There are Minnesota statutes that allow for the appointment of this board. A board like this has been used in the past by some counties. The recount following the last U.S. Senate election, has alerted officials to the benefits of using this method of handling absentee ballots. end

Friday, April 09, 2010

Worth Repeating

Recently Free Press writer, Tim Krohn did an article about the retirement of Senator Dennis Fredrickson. Senator Fredrickson was my senator at one point in his 30 year career. He is one who receives and deserves much admiration. His background was that of being a farmer and also a former county commissioner. I believe that is why he has had such a stellar career and why he is one of a dieing breed. By that I mean he is one of the few statesmen left in St. Paul as opposed to many politicians. His vote on the gas tax is an example. He and Senator Dille were the only Republicans in the Senate to vote in favor.
Krohn's article shares much worth repeating. "Fredrickson's sense of public service was forged from the nearly lost concept that common good trumps self or party." The Senator is quoted as saying, "on the large issues like taxes and spending, it's certainly gotten more partisan and the lines more firmly drawn." Going on the article states, "The chief reason, he (Fredrickson) believes is the cacophony of media today. The instant communications we have and the non-stop discussion of politics in the media, on cable, the Internet---people hear these issues and take sides. Extreme opinions are expressed and people aren't always discerning about that they're hearing."
Again quoting the article, "the solution, he says---no matter how unlikely---is for a more informed public with people looking at in-depth stories in newspapers and magazines rather than listening to the rhetoric and sound bites on their TV or cell phones." Amen to that.
Thank You Senator Fredrickson for being a friend of agriculture, water quality, and small business. We need more like you in St. Paul. end

Monday, April 05, 2010

What About the Game?

Now that we have the new Target Field Stadium for the Twins to play in, the pundits have hyped it to us - the baseball consumers. The way I hear it is that we are urged to come downtown early and visit restaurants, bars etc. before the game. Then we are urged to come to the wonderful new stadium and enjoy the delights of several food places. After the game it will take awhile to get all the fans away from the downtown stadium. We are then urged to visit more local nightspots for more food and drink.

My question is - What about the game? It seems like the actual reason for it all, the good old American passtime - watching baseball has been trumped by all of the food and beverage attractions. And then we wonder why we are all obese? end